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HOME WIN KEEPS BUCCS IN SECOND PLACE
BUCCANEERS 24 OLD BELVEDERE 13
The BUCCANEERS and Previous Belvedere supplied a compelling and aggressive Energia All-Eire League contest on the very crowded Dubarry Park on Saturday with a stronger end from the house workforce incomes them a deserved 24-13 victory. This win ensures the Buccs proceed their promising begin to the season and retains them in second place in Division 1B. After heavy in a single day rain, extra downpours arrived simply earlier than kick-off, which, relieved by a diagonal breeze, made for tough enjoying situations.
Buccs made six personnel modifications – 4 within the pack and two by the baseline – because the beginning XV he gained at Highfield. Michael Hanley returned after being injured at fly half with Will Reilly beginning at scrum half. Danny Qualter made his first AIL begin of the season and Ciaran Sales space returned in No. 8 whereas James Kelly and Shane Delahunt made it to the entrance row. This meant that Oisin McCormack resumed his extra acquainted position as an outspoken flanker. Previous Belvedere had a extra secure line-up with David Wilkinson switching from fullback to stand-off and Joe White shifting to fullback with Gavin Nugent coming in on the fitting flank.
The guests benefited from the weather for the primary time and obtained an additional increase early when Qualter, getting back from vacation, was yellow carded for a disorderly sort out after simply three minutes. The outdated Belvo appeared to take a fast lead and Buccs got here beneath strain with Hanley making a intelligent clearance earlier than the midlanders have been penalized at a ruck. Nevertheless, Justin Leonard missed this comparatively direct penalty within the eleventh minute.
Buccs started to settle down as did the climate and Josh O’Connor made a typical foray down the facet of the grandstand and this was adopted by a rumble from Qualter alongside this flank as nicely. The Pirates have been now taking management of the proceedings and Qualter nearly made his approach via the center. Subsequent, Saul O’Carroll, O’Connor, Shane Layden and Reilly mixed on the left facet of the sphere the place this Pirates foray fell quick. However this improved play earned the hosts a penalty within the twenty fifth minute which Hanley scored to open the scoring.
4 minutes later the Metropolitans returned to the cost with a penalty to the contact of the left after a lateral entry by Buccs. Making certain clear possession of the lineout, his pack attacked the house line the place Kiwi Kale Thatcher grounded out to attain his third strive of the season. Leonard’s conversion went extensive however, when Buccs did not roll, the middle outscored Previous Belvedere 8-3 with a penalty within the thirty fifth minute.
Buccs’ restart went straight into contact after which his scrum fell halfway, however Leonard was unable to land the ensuing penalty from halfway. Nevertheless, Belvo superior in a prolonged closing interval till the primary half throughout which Martin Staunton was penalized for diving on a free ball because the Dubliners tried to cross the house line. However the depleted Pirates group made a valiant effort to maintain their line intact till halftime, and in hindsight, this was arguably the essential phase of the sport.
With the solar and breeze now at their backs, the Buccs have been a rejuvenated power after the change of wingers and shortly moved ahead and appeared to open an early hole within the Previous Belvedere defence. Nevertheless, referee Dermot Blake whistled swiftly to award the Athlone workforce a penalty slightly than enable the result in proceed, as half-time substitute Frankie Hopkins had discovered a gap within the guests’ backline and was heading to a protected strive. As a substitute, they needed to accept a penalty from Hanley within the forty third minute.
Previous Belvedere responded with a great interval of possession, going via the phases and advancing into dwelling territory. Ultimately, they absorbed the Pirates protection and Jayden Beckett kicked throughout the sphere to the unattended Nugent, who swung extensive to the fitting for an unconverted strive within the forty seventh minute.
However, as soon as they received again to full power, the Buccaneers once more started to dictate and took a lot better benefit of the breeze. Fergus Galvin made an awesome block that finally led to Hanley’s third profitable penalty within the 52nd minute. Buccs then utilized fierce strain, however successful within the greasy situations ended that promising spell. Nevertheless, a excessive midfield sort out on the hour mark produced a penalty that Hanley handily drilled to go away the Buccaneers only one level down 12-13.
A splendid discipline kick by McCormack (harking back to his father Peter) introduced Buccs to the Previous Belvedere 22-yard line, the place the midlanders swooped in to use severe strain. From Wilkinson’s rushed clearance, Jennings countered and related with Stephen Mannion, who drew the quilt earlier than releasing O’Carroll. The towering ahead had an excessive amount of tempo for Cian Cunningham and dove into the left nook pennant for a splendid try within the 69th minute to regain the lead for the Buccaneers.
Hanley’s conversion was narrowly misplaced to the wind, however the Buccs have been now on the upswing and so they weren’t about to let the victory slip away. The rain returned, this time in a biblical deluge, because the Pirates locked up Previous Belvedere. His sustained onslaught was rewarded with a late penalty in entrance of the posts the place skipper Staunton bravely opted to the touch and go. A fierce barrage down the ‘black’ line adopted, Previous Belvedere desperately holding on till Hopkins handed to Layden, whose power and need proved an excessive amount of for defender Patrick Dowling. Within the now downpour, Hanley added an outstanding conversion to finish a 24-13 win that despatched the guests dwelling empty-handed.
Layden could have been the winner of the Audi Athlone Man of the Match, however this was one other actually integral contribution from the workforce. After a generally detached first half, the Buccs have been extra galvanized and medical after the change of ends. They stored their momentum going till the tip, as the ultimate two makes an attempt of the quarter will testify, however they should work on defending from mauls. McCormack was immensely concerned within the proceedings, and Delahunt grew into the sport as he went alongside. Hanley is economical within the exterior half, the place his tackling is immense for a thin body. Buccs additionally received extra from his bench, an space the place Previous Belvedere arguably reduce and traded an excessive amount of. Belvo are a great athletic and well-coached workforce, however have been unable to carry onto their lead regardless of the efforts of Thatcher, Cunningham and Conall Fowl as they splurged with their place kicks.
BUCCANEERS:- S.Jennings; J.O’Connor, S.Layden, S.Mannion, S.O’Carroll; M. Hanley, W. Reilly; J.Kelly, S.Delahunt, M.Staunton (captain); R. Byrne, F. Galvin; D. Qualter, O. McCormack, and C. Sales space. Replacements:- F.Hopkins (for Reilly, h/t), C.McCann (for Galvin, 55 min), S.Lombard (for Delahunt, 60 min), S.O’Connell (for Kelly, 60 min), R. Fallon and O. Burgess.
OLD BELVEDERE:- J. White; G.Nugent, J.Beckett, J.Leonard, A.Robles; D. Wilkinson, C. Fowl; J. Mulherne, C. Dowling, J. Bollard (captain); F. McWey, C. Owende; P. Dowling, T. Mulcair, and Ok. Thatcher. Replacements:- B.Dooley (for Mulherne, 37 min), J.Mulherne (for Dooley, h/t), A.O’Donnell (for Mulherne, 53 min), W.McDonald (for Owende, 53 min), C.Cunningham (by Mulcair, 58 min), B.Dooley (by O’Donnell, 58 min), B.Leonard (by Fowl, 69 min), A.O’Donnell (by Dooley, 74 min) and J. McAleese (for Nugent, 63 minutes).
Referee: – Dermot Blake (IRFU).
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BUCCANEERS 24 OLD BELVEDERE 13 • Buccaneers R.F.C